Going overseas... mobile phone advice??

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by 2A Batterie, Apr 25, 2008.

  1. 2A Batterie macrumors 6502a

    2A Batterie

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Out of a Suitcase, USA
    #1
    I'm going to Europe for three months to work on a cruise ship. I'll be going to several countries, mainly in western Europe and Scandinavia. I have no idea where to begin with cell phone use. I have T-Mobile and use a (ugh) Razr, although am thinking about upgrading. Has anyone traveled abroad for an extended period of time and changed their cell phone plan specifically for it? I want to keep my phone number while over there, but don't want to pay a million dollars in roaming charges. Any advice?
     
  2. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #2
    You wouldn't be able to keep your number, and you'd need to ensure that your phone is unlocked, but if your traveling for an extended period, have you considered buying a prepayed SIM card? Just pop it in your phone and you're ready to go.
     
  3. 2A Batterie thread starter macrumors 6502a

    2A Batterie

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Out of a Suitcase, USA
    #3
    Prepaid sim cards? ARe they available for T-mobile?
     
  4. bigandy macrumors G3

    bigandy

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2004
    Location:
    Murka
    #4
    Unlocked phone and prepaid sim card.

    When travelling, I always buy a prepaid card in every country I visit. For a few bucks, it's by far the best way, and avoids all the international roaming pish. Keeping a UK sim would cripple me financially.
     
  5. shikimo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2007
    Location:
    Lyon, France
    #5
    I think they're available for any phone, regardless of provider, as long as your phone is unlocked. This is the way to go...It's the only way to have affordable cell access when traveling. The great thing about European SIM cards is that you can receive calls free of charge, regardless of whether you have any available minutes to make calls yourself.

    I think EricNau is right, though: I don't think there's any way to keep your number without getting butchered by roaming and international calling rates.

    BTW, I have an old T-Mobile phone that I use here with a SIM from Orange. When I first tried to use it, it was locked; I called T-Mobile, who told me that they wouldn't give me the unlock code because I had been disconnected for more than six months, which seems to imply that they would give it to an active customer such as yourself. Incidentally, I got mine unlocked for 15 EUR at a shady joint in a shady neighborhood in Lyon...it still says T-Mobile on the start-up screen and doesn't get the correct time off of the network anymore, but it works perfectly other than that.
     
  6. iMacZealot macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2005
    #6
    1) Unlock your RAZR. If you bought your RAZR through T-Mobile, it can only be used with T-Mobile unless you unlock it, which is something T-Mobile will freely do if you've been a customer for at least 90 days.

    2) Use United Mobile. It's the cheapest and most convenient option by far. While they will give you either a UK (+44) or Liechtenstein (+423) number, you can divert your calls from your US number if you really need to. UM is really cheap with free incoming calls in all of Europe and low outgoing rates. It's much better than hunting for a prepaid SIM in every country you go to.

    Good luck.
     
  7. shikimo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2007
    Location:
    Lyon, France
    #7
    Hey that's pretty cool...
     
  8. asrmatt macrumors regular

    asrmatt

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2006
    Location:
    Rome, Italy
    #8
    I think Vodaphone has a few good offers for roaming around europe.... I would check it out
     
  9. 2A Batterie thread starter macrumors 6502a

    2A Batterie

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Out of a Suitcase, USA
    #9
    Wow, thanks for the tip. So it looks like buying sim card from United Mobile will cost around $60.00. All I have to do is call up T-Mobile and ask them to unlock my phone and the United Mobile card will work? Is that the least expensive option out there?

    A bit more info: I'll won't be using my cell phone for long amounts of time or to shoot the breeze. I'll be using it mainly for checking my voice mail and to briefly touch base with my friends and family in the US
     
  10. 7on macrumors 601

    7on

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2003
    Location:
    Dress Rosa
    #10
    Also fyi, if you want to use your tmo account turn on international roaming and I think it's only 99 cents a minute.
     
  11. 2A Batterie thread starter macrumors 6502a

    2A Batterie

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Out of a Suitcase, USA
    #11
    Only 99 cents per minute?:D
     
  12. Rhosfelt macrumors 65816

    Rhosfelt

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2007
    Location:
    I don't want to be raped :(
    #12
    Anyone have any suggestions for studying abroad in the UK? I am hoping to get an iPhone this summer when the new ones come out, with a data plan.

    Should I look into changing my plan, or taking my phone with me and asking (I think?) O2 to pick me up? I guess I need to start thinking about this...
     
  13. 2A Batterie thread starter macrumors 6502a

    2A Batterie

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Out of a Suitcase, USA
    #13
    I wish I had some input to offer, but I do love your avatar!
     
  14. Rhosfelt macrumors 65816

    Rhosfelt

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2007
    Location:
    I don't want to be raped :(
    #14
    Haha thank you, always glad to met another fan! I do have about a year to figure it out..going to Sheffield Hallam University for my spring semester.
     
  15. Mammoth macrumors 6502a

    Mammoth

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #15
    I will be in Italy for about a month this summer. How would I go about buying a prepaid phone and SIM? (I've heard there's some complications)
     

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